…and checked something off my long, long, long list. I have wanted to write some kind of series or epic based on Rudyard Kipling’s “The Gods of the Copybook Headings.” This was a prophetic piece much neglected, partly because hardly anyone now alive knows what a copybook is–or was–thanks, in large part, to the widespread implementation of marxist education theory in government schools, and in fact, in most other schools as well.
And indeed I have done so with this series of four interlocking sonnets. This form of ‘tag’ link will have the series reading from the bottom up, for which I apologise. I shall not be able to do anything nerdy, as it were, about that until I have control of my CSS, and/or move my blogs to an outside host; the former is more likely to happen sooner than the latter, as for that one must pay a small yearly fee and then one may tweak, dink, and hack, to ones hearts content.
In any case, I have long been desirous of writing something of a sequel, in view of the modern Romantic Realism Movement, which is a sign that such evils as are mentioned in Kipling’s poem are, at the very least, in the process of being supplanted. It does, at least to me, seem somehow appropriate that I meld sonnet form with the form used by Kipling; which, after all lends itself to something approximating a ten syllable line–when one takes into account his caesuras (weak beats that are skipped without affecting the overall rhythm. But always liking a challenge, I chose to observe all ten syllables without caesuras (i.e. skipping weak beats.)
Regarding Romantic Realism, I have long thought that was what was necessary was to make, so to speak, an “end run” around the Frankfurters–and wieners of all kind; (dare I mention “Spotted Dick?”) the point here being that, this, now, is being done: End run schools, End run universities. End run artistic foundations. Anyone sporting ugly glasses, and espousing ugly ideas, need not apply. This, as some bloggers have recently asked me, is part of the reason why I do not accept awards of any kind, nor participate in aggregation sites or magazines. Although perhaps, when I find myself face to face with a genuine Romantic one, I may change my mind. But even then, I doubt that I will.
But regarding this end run, I feel this is a long time overdue, I feel, for any number of reasons, not the least of which is that poetry entered this sort of ugly glasses realm many many decades ago–nearly a century now–and has essentially gone nowhere for near three generations. In the sphere of poetry, and in fact, in most other art, (if not all) there is nowhere to go, BUT up. But this is the first real movement that implores artists everywhere, to take a good hold of that cross, and, as it were, rip it from that barrel of urine, start marching up that modernistic Guggenheim-shaped spiral until they arrive somewhere above the ninth ring, if you will, preferably well above ground, metaphorically; and hence, somewhere meaningful.
I don’t mean by this that people should return to classical forms–there have been all kinds of technical development in virtually all art forms–but that there was some kind of sense of life that existed, as I’ve mentioned in earlier posts, prior to 1914. Which seems to be the real dividing point between the good the bad and the ugly. I use that term because good and evil are worth exploring, however ugliness, after this period has not so much been explored–as would be appropriate in any art form–but has been exalted. But even more inappropriate than that, ugliness has become the standard by which beauty is measured. The post 1914 yardstick has become: If it’s ugly, then it’s beautiful, and if it’s beautiful, its not even worth mentioning, relegating all things truly beautiful, to give an example in painting or drawing, to the world of “Illustration,” (and thus to the commercial–and hence not “true” art)
Fortunately, the Romantic Realist Movement makes no such distinction. Art is art. Even if ugly. I may not prefer ugly glasses nor ugly art, however it is still art–I may simply call it BAD art, if I wish. Or lazy. Or even dishonest. In this way, Fine art cannot be marginalized. And a spade is called, for want of a better word, a spade.
But the movement goes far beyond that, choosing to exalt the human spirit, and would make any individual, individualist, or even individualist philosopher, now living or dead, very proud. One of the items on my “Big List” is to more fully explore the movement such as it is now. Currently I find 216 hits on wordpress search. That’s up a bit from last week, if I recall correctly. I think that is quite good news.